So close, and yet so distant.
So light in color, so dark in stories.
A rocky, unoccupied islet right at the mouth of Elounda’s natural port -originally part of Crete, which was carved out during Venetian occupation for defensive purposes.
The Venetians were the ones who named the island as well, since spina longa means long thorn in Italian. From fortress to leper colony -from 1903 to 1957- Spinalonga has been a symbol, a strategic point, an inspiration. Victoria Hislop’s bestselling novel The Island takes place here, and since its publication -which spawned a Greek television series called To Nissi (The Island)- Spinanolga has become the second most popular destination in Crete.
A shroud of mystery covers its empty, narrow streets and the ruins of Venetian and Turkish homes, even in broad daylight. In addition, the lack of accommodation and the visiting restrictions -all tours last only a few hours- create
a unique and fascinating atmosphere for its visitors.
Spinalonga is easily accessible by boat from both Elounda (15′) and Aghios Nikolaos (60′) as tourist boats depart from both towns on a daily basis.
PLACES TO VISIT
Whether you are a cultural aficionado, a nature lover or an urban explorer, there’s much to see and even more to do. Crete’s past and present intertwined in magical landscapes, unique monuments and exciting venues!